Garfoot wears leader’s jersey into final stage in Australia
It’s fair to say that it’s been an Orica-AIS-and-Wiggle-High5 show at the Santos Women’s Tour. Three stages done and the two teams have swapped victories and taken one-two punches, but it’s Orica’s Katrin Garfoot who will wear the leader’s jersey into the finale stage 4 in Victoria Park on Tuesday, albeit with no time advantage.
Garfoot kicked off the women’s race with a victory on stage 1 in Mt Torrens on Friday. She won a small group sprint to the finish line and took the event’s first leader’s jersey.
Wiggle took a one-two punch on stage 2 but it wasn’t enough to knock Garfoot out of the lead in Adelaide. Orica-AIS were next to seal a one-two victory with Lizzie Williams soloing to the stage 3 win, and then Garfoot winning the sprint for second ahead of Lauren Kitchen (Hitec)
Garfoot holds the lead into the final stage but she has the same time as runner-up Kitchen, third placed Shelley Olds (Cylance Pro Cycling) and fourth place rider Dani King (Wiggle High5)
“I had to make sure I outsprinted Lauren to keep the jersey,” Garfoot said after stage 3. “I don’t know how I did it because I’m not a sprinter, but it was good for us. We’re really happy.”
The Santos Women’s Tour will conclude with a criterium in Victoria Park.
Watch the video below with Williams talking about her stage 3 win.
Wiggle High5’s King in polka-dot jersey, fourth overall
Wiggle High5 ‘s Dani King has shown top form in January with a fourth-place overall heading into the last stage of the Santos Women’s Tour.
Wiggle High5 have had success at the Santos Women’s Tour with a one-two finish on stage 2 in Adelaide where Annette Edmondson took the win ahead of Chloe Hosking.
King has had consistent performances with a third place in stage 1, ninth in stage 2 and fifth in stage 3. Her stage 3 result was marred by a crash in the final part of the race while she was in the lead breakaway. She finished the race and was given fifth place and the same time as the group.
She was active during the race and collected enough points to stay in the lead of the mountain competition. “I got into an early break that was brought back, and then had to stay concentrated for counter attacks which happened straight away. I wanted to keep the KOM jersey and got second in first one - as a non GC contender was off the front - and I won the second."
King described her crash while in the final, decisive breakaway. ““A small group of seven formed and we ended up with around five minutes on the peloton,” King said. “Orica-AIS had three riders so were constantly attacking. Lizzie [Williams] got away with around 5km to go so I was going to be sprinting for second but unfortunately, with 800 metres to go, I went to sprint following Tiffany Cromwell and my gears jammed causing me to go over my handle bars.
“As I was in the last km I got given the same time as the lead group and so I maintain my fourth place and I’ve extended my lead of the KOM jersey.”
Check out the video below with Wiggle High5's Edmondson talking about her stage 2 victory, Hosking taking second on the day, and King's mountain jersey.
Cylance on the brink of a stage win, overall win at Santos Women's Tour
Cylance's professional women's cycling kit made its debut at the Santos Women's Tour on Friday. Starting the race with defending champion Valentina Scandolara and American sprinter Shelley Olds, the team looked poised to take a stage win early on but despite being so close to the top step of the podium, that hasn't happened yet.
Olds has shown herself to be on very good form at the women's stage race with a second place in the opening stage, eighth in stage 2 and fourth in stage 3, and she sits in third overall heading into the final stage, with the same time as leader Garfoot.
During the stage 2 final sprint, Olds made it through a crash but managed to finish in the top 10 on the day and maintain her spot in third overall.
"A crash at 800m separated the group from a hand full of riders and Shelley was able to make it through to stay in the top 10 and preserve her GC position with 8th on the stage and 3rd overall," Cylance team posted on their Facebook page.
Scandolara is currently sitting in 17th overall. Watch the pre-race interview with Scandolara below.
Hitec Products poised for success in Australia
Hitec Products Lauren Kitchen is second overall at the Santos Women's Tour ahead of the final criterium. She also has the same time as overall leader Garfoot and could potentially win the overall title.
Kitchen has had a strong race so far with fourth in stage 1, fifth in stage 2 and third in stage 3. Her finish in stage 3 was important as she entered a head-to-head sprint with Garfoot for second place, while Orica-AIS' Williams won the race solo.
Kitchen is supported by teammates Tatiana Guderzo, Julie Leth and Janicke Gunvaldsen.